On Air
0:00
0:00
Open In Popup
MPR News

Photos: Twin Cities streets at the end of the Depression

Share story

Tattered billboard
Tattered billboard, Minneapolis, September 1939.
John Vachon | Courtesy of the Library of Congress

From 1935 through 1944, the U.S. government sent photographers across the country to document American life — and how relief programs were helping those struggling through the Great Depression.

St. Paul native John Vachon worked for the Farm Security Administration — and then the Office of War Information — from 1938 until 1943. He later became a staff photographer at Look magazine.

John Vachon died in 1975, but would have turned 101 yesterday. All week, we're republishing photos from his Minnesota rovings.